Best Calling Apps: Google Duo Review

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Google launched Duo, a new video calling app. The app is intended directly to compete against Apple’s FaceTime and Microsoft’s Skype. The main advantage of Google duo app is this works not only works with mobile devices running on Google’s Android operating system but also works on Apple’s iOS too.

Google Duo App

As the name suggests, the app focuses on a one-to-one video calling feature, hence, it does not support group calling. However, Duo has a completely unique feature, which other similar rival apps lack at the moment. The feature shows the live video of the person calling you before you even pick up the call, allowing you to answer or reject at will. The duo will inform you that your live video will be broadcasted to the recipient even before your call is answered. Google calls this feature ‘Knock Knock’.

If you want to use this app just download Duo, register your phone number once, and after a verification code is sent back, you can start using the service instantly. The app also needs permission to access your contacts, microphone, and camera in order to work. Google’s Duo could work well against Apple’s FaceTime since the other one only allows video calling between two iOS devices, but Google Duo allows video calling between cross-platform devices.

As an additional benefit, Android users will be able to see the video preview of the caller on the lock screen too, while Apple users would require the app to be active in the background, and have the smartphone unlocked too. If not, the iPhone user can only see the caller alert in the notification window.

In contrast, the Knock Knock feature does not work well on iPhones too—the recipient cannot see the video of the caller before answering the call. However, on FaceTime, this works pretty well as designed. This goes to say that Apple has always been a sealed platform to massive restrictions when it comes to third-party and cross-platform apps.

The duo works best on Wi-Fi and 3G/4G cellular networks and automatically switches the audio/video quality depending on the speed of connection.. Similar to FaceTime, WhatsApp voice calling, Duo also has the same issue where the recipient at times just does not receive the call, but the caller sees the rings going through.

Just in case, another Duo call comes through, the app sends a message to the other caller notifying him that you are unreachable to take his call. In addition, the recipient will also receive a notification highlighting the missed call from the new caller.

Similar to FaceTime, Duo also offers a self-view window, placed in the bottom-left right corner, where one can adjust oneself to be in view. The selfie window cannot be shifted, but a tap on the self-video switch between the caller and self in full screen or window, respectively. Other features include switching between the front and rear camera and mute. However, unlike FaceTime, you don’t have the option to make only voice calls and are restricted to video calling only.

Duo has another advantage to its side — which only allows a genuine user with a mobile number to be logged on to the app (similar to the lines of WhatsApp).

While Google’s Duo is certainly unique as compared to other apps, there are still a few drawbacks and missing features that need to be addressed. Duo has a lot of room to grow and competitors such as Apple and Microsoft are presently taking the lead. The duo is absolutely a welcome competitor in the Android world, but well-known apps will still be number one over Duo. Positively Google would implement Duo into Android the identical way Apple does with FaceTime

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